This week’s comedy picks have never performed in Tucson before. They bring the funny in very different styles: Think El Charro vs. BKs, both of which they should visit.
Johnny Beehner: Funny in any genre
Johnny Beehner mines laughs from everyday details no one else notices but everyone recognizes. In his anecdotes of family life, his craft has an almost microscopic focus, his jokes an elegant simplicity. Delightfully, his comedy also dissolves gender boundaries, reflecting sharing arrangements common to two-career households.
The relaxed character of Beehner’s performance, including improvised crowd work belies how much commitment and work are behind it.
Beehner started his career as an improv comedian with Marquette University’s vaunted Studio 013 Refugees (Fugees). He followed up in the cast of renowned iO Chicago, and now is working with UCB (Upright Citizens Brigade) Los Angeles. UCB alumni include Parks and Recreation’s Amy Pohler, Funny or Die founder Adam McKay, and The Daily Show
’s Ed Helms.
Beehner made his network standup debut on one of the last broadcasts of The Late Show With David Letterman
. Although he enjoys the thrill of spontaneity and risk in improv team performances, he says he finds writing and performing stand-up more satisfying. When the applause comes, he says, he enjoys taking all the credit.
Lance Paullin opens for Beehner at 8 and 10: 30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 20; and 7 and 9:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 21. Laffs is at 2900 E. Broadway. Tickets and information are at laffstucson.com. Artist information and videos are at johnnybeehner.com and lancepaullin.com
Dave Waite Makes Comedy Tuesday at the Screening Room
Dave Waite headlines in The Screening Room’s new Tuesday comedy series at 8 p.m., Jan. 24. He’s setting a high bar as the first touring comedian to share in Tucson’s current indie comedy boom. Waite’s network debut on the Jimmy Fallon Show revealed him as an archetype of that uncle you’d most like to duck out and smoke a joint with. His stories are self-deprecating, but from the perspective of the cheery scrapper and survivor we would all love to be if we didn’t have to feed the kids and make mortgage payments.
The Screening Room is at 127 E Congress St. Tickets are $5 in advance at tsrdowntown.com, or $8 at the door. Artist information is at davewaitecomedy.com.